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Battle Atlas of the Falklands War 1982



Brig J F Ricketts, 1st Welsh Guards

on to 15. Royal Air Force


Build-Up - Once 3 Commando Brigade was ashore, the Army's 5th Infantry Brigade would arrive to bring total land forces strength to approximately 10,000 men. Both brigades would then come under the divisional headquarters of Major General Jeremy Moore RM as Commander, Land Forces Falkland Islands. Even then, to retake the islands, he would be far short of the superiority of numbers needed to easily defeat the well dug-in defenders.

Men of 1st Welsh Guards in Sea King helicopter drill on "Queen Elizabeth II"
(Courtesy Brig J F Ricketts)

Brigade infantry was provided by the

1st Battalion, 7th Duke of Edinburgh's Own Gurkha Rifles

together with two Guards battalions - 1st Welsh and 2nd Scots transferred to 5th Infantry to replace 2 and 3 Para.

Before sailing, they trained for two weeks near Sennybridge in Wales in terrain similar to the Falklands.

Support came from a variety of arms and units, some of which were already represented in 3 Cdo Bde:

Artillery - HQ and 97 Bty, 4 Field Regt RA with 6x105mm guns

Air defence - one troop of 43 Air Defence Bty, 32 Guided Weapons Regt RA with Blowpipe SAM's

Combat engineers - 36 Engineer Regt RE and 9 Parachute Sqdn RE

Helicopters - 656 AAC Sqdn with 3 Scout AH.1's and 6 Gazelle AH.1's (one Gazelle was lost)

HQ and Communications - Brigade HQ and Signal Sqdn with Rear Link Detachments Royal Signals

Other units included, complete or in part -

  • 407 Road Transport Troop RCT with Snowcats
  • 16 Field Ambulance RAMC
  • 81 and 91 Ordnance Coy and 421 Explosive Ordnance Disposal Coy RAOC
  • 10 Field Workshop REME
  • 160 Provost

Most of the more than 3,000 men of the Brigade sailed on "Queen Elizabeth 2" and were joined from Ascension by General Moore as Commander (designate) who assumed full command of land forces in early June. Supporting equipment, some troops and the helicopters were carried by transports "Baltic Ferry" and "Nordic Ferry".


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revised 31/5/13